Several Republican congressmen who are Notre Dame graduates are criticizing the Catholic university for inviting President Barack Obama to deliver a commencement speech and giving him an honorary degree.
The lawmakers say Obama’s views on abortion run counter to Catholic beliefs, The Hill newspaper reported.
“It would be appropriate for Notre Dame to invite the president of the United States to deliver the commencement address, provided that the university made it absolutely clear how strongly it disagreed with President Obama’s stand on abortion,” said Rep. Pete King of New York, who received a law degree from Notre Dame in 1968.
“It is wrong, however, for Notre dame to award President Obama an honorary degree, because this will be seen as tacit acceptance of the president’s abortion views, which are so antithetical to Catholic moral teaching on the sanctity and value of human life.”
Rep. Dan Lungren, also a Notre Dame alumnus, called the Indiana university’s move “an extreme disappointment.”
And Rep. Mark Souder of Indiana called Obama’s pro-choice stand an affront to the Catholic faith.
An online petition asks the university’s president to cancel the “travesty” of Obama speaking at graduation, according to The Hill. As of Wednesday afternoon, the petition had more than 130,000 signatures.
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